A meeting of last resort


This is about a lady who lost her only child when the boy was twenty. She was by that time a single mother who had given all she had to bringing him up and she was completely devastated when he suddenly died. Life made no sense to her any more, and she fell into a deep, occasionally psychotic depression. She followed every advice the many people in her family gave her, saw several therapists, but it all made no difference. Life had lost all its meaning for her and that was it.

Finally someone suggested she meet Sri Ramana Maharshi, a saint living in Tiruvannamalai, a few hundred kilometers from the town where she lived. When she walked into his Ashram at the foot of the sacred Arunachala Hill, he happened to come from the other side. At the end of the path leading into the ashram there are a few steps up to the platform on which you find the Ashram's main building, and it is there that they met, she standing below looking up at him, he standing at the top of the steps looking down.

According to the story, they looked into each other's eyes for a full forty minutes without uttering a word.

Then they both smiled and her problem had been solved. After that she spent most of her, now peaceful and happy days in the Ashram looking after guests or doing whatever else the Ashram required, occasionally visiting her family whenever they needed her.

In many ways it had been the ultimate therapy session.

I've heard two slightly different versions of this story, and it is quite possible that it got polished over the years, but I've heard so many similar stories from perfectly honest, down-to-earth people that I've no doubt that something like this may well have happened. Here is a slightly less dramatic story, that I can vouch for as I was personally present.